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David Walker has worked long and hard to get hold of a copy of the 1960 recording
made by the St Columba's choir in Rome. This is an amazing piece of internet
detective work and we are indebted to David for this contribution.

You may also want to read the article that David
wrote for the Pelican magazine, way back in 1960.

Click here to go directly to Page 2 of the HISTORIES section.

David has transcribed the original recording on to cd and has already distributed copies to several people.
He writes :

"I hope that you experience the same thrill that I did when I heard the record for the very first time — imagine hearing your own voice after 44 years ! The record was obtained from the former German choir leader, after tring to obtain a copy for 4 years via the internet. I have managed to produce an astoundingly good quality recoding from the old 12" LP — but remember that the recording technology of 1960 is not comparable with today, but the disk itself has 44 years of being played behind it.

If anyone can supply me with a complete list of names of the choir members (see the photo taken in St Columba's chapel in 1960 already on the website), I would be very obliged.

Don't be surprised if people can't recognise anyone — my own mother couldn't pick me out !

The cd songs are divided into 3 groups :

a) all 4500 singers together
b) The 4 main choirs (Germany, UK, Italy) together, e.g. "Silent Night"
c) solo numbers — we are no. 8 (The Keel Row, conducted by Fr Conway).

However, the 3 hour concert has been heavily edited to get it down to LP size."

The front cover of the LP:

(source : David Walker)

Yes, I thought it was Latin, too !

The back cover of the LP:

(source : David Walker)

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(source : David Walker)

4,500 singers took part.

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(source : David Walker)

Who can you name ?
An enlarged copy of this photo follows on the next page.

Tony Smyth suggests the following (L-R) :

Back row : David Walker, Ian Netton, Seamus o'Grady, Anthony Gallagher,
Dennis Smyth, Owen Gormley, John Scully, Brian Kearns.
Front Row : Edmund Cushlow, David Ritson, Martyn Buckley,
John Mattock, Paul Maggiore, Liam Lawlor, Andy Murphy, Mike Ellis

Pat Gritton identified Anthony Gallagher from Fife :
"What a singer he was. He was the leading soprano in the radio
sung mass (on the "Home Service ? ) in 1962. That was
another big day, in my hazy memory."

Who knows about this radio broadcast ?